President Erdoğan receives Turkish Paralympic athletes
by Daily Sabah with AA
ISTANBULOct 03, 2016 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Daily Sabah with AA
Oct 03, 2016 12:00 am
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met with Turkish athletes at the Presidential Palace who won medals at the Rio 2016 Paralympics. The athletes told President Erdoğan about the medals they won as well as their training. An athlete from the National Goalball team said "We won a gold medal unbeaten. My husband had won bronze in the 2012 London Olympics."
Then Erdoğan said to her, "You went ahead of your husband." Another athlete in the hall added, "No, she crushed her husband" and the crowd chuckled. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım also received the athletes at the official residence of the Prime Ministry on Saturday. Yıldırım said, "[Reminding the team that Turkey came 34th in the Paralympics] We have to be ranked in between 10th and 20th. We must not rank below 20. We are in the top 20 in economics. We must also be in the top 20 in sports."
Turkey delivered its best Paralympic performance ever by bringing home nine medals from the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Turkish athletes won three gold, one silver and five bronze medals in the Paralympic games, which ended on Sept. 18. Rio was Turkey's sixth Paralympic outing. The country has won gold in three of these Games: 2004; 2008; and 2012. One of Turkey's Rio gold medalists was female weightlifter Nazmiye Muratlı who broke a world record by lifting 104 kilograms in the women's 41-kilogram powerlifting category. Turkish athlete Abdullah Öztürk won gold in table tennis men's singles Class 4.
The Turkish international completed the group stage as the leader after beating Israeli Shay Siada 3-0 and Chinese player Xingyuan Guo 3-1. Öztürk went on to eliminate South Korean Ilsang Choi in the quarter finals and his French opponent Maxime Thomas by 3-2 in the semifinals. The Turkish competitor eventually claimed the gold medal by winning again against China's Xingyuan Guo 3-1 in the finals. Turkey's women's goalball team also took home gold, building on their performance as reigning European champions. This was Turkey's first team sport gold medal in Paralympic history. In the meantime, another Turkish table tennis player, 22-year-old Kübra Korkut, claimed silver in the women's singles Class 7 category. Overall, Turkey won five bronze medals in judo, athletics, shooting and table tennis in Rio. Turkey was ranked 34th overall in the medals table.